Valentine’s Day Dinner Guide for Every Style

Our Valentine’s Day dinner-date and style guide for the romantic—and the rebel.

Which Valentine’s Day venue best suits your style? Whether you’re looking for romance or simply a night out with friends, our editors at Zagat offer top places to dine and we share what to wear.

ROMANTIC: DANIEL

There’s perhaps no greater V-Day indulgence than dinner at Daniel Boulud’s classic Upper East Side icon, Daniel. The four-course, $325 tasting menu includes dishes like the oven-baked sea bass and the milk-fed veal tenderloin. Pair your meal with one of the global selections from their massive 2,000+ bottle wine cellar.

30 Rockefeller Center, 65th Floor, 212-632-5000


FOODIE: TAKASHI

Adventurous diners will delight in grilling up their own beef over table grills while they sip sake and ponder whether or not to try the Testicargot (prairie oysters, escargot style with garlic shiso butter). The West Village all-beef foodie favorite also offers up more conventional options for slightly less daring dining companions. 

456 Hudson Street; 212-414-2929


FOR THE LADIES: CLAUDETTE

Chef Koren Grieveson’s white-and-grey-tiled, Provencal-inspired dining room make it the perfect option for Valentine’s Day dinner with the girls. The $85 prix-fixe menu includes such dishes as fried oysters Rockefeller, shaved Romanesco salad, beef tartare and pan-roasted market fish, and a sweet finish of either warm chocolate cake or mini Croquembouche with blood orange mousse. 

24 5th Avenue; 212-868-2424


FOR THE GENTS: DIRTY FRENCH

Located in the Ludlow Hotel, Dirty French is as eclectic as the neon pink sign outside. The club-like Lower East Side restaurant’s name sounds like it could be a boîte in New Orleans or a trendy martini. The $150 prix-fixe menu (exclusive of tax, tip and alcohol) includes options like short rib with lime cornichon or a selection of East Coast oysters with Tabasco vinaigrette. Pair your meal with bartender Thomas Waugh’s potent cocktails, such as the Pigalle: bourbon, ancho chile, bitter aperitif, fresh orange and lemon juices. 

180 Ludlow Street; 212-254-3000


ANTI-VALENTINE’S DAY:
Empellón Al Pastor

February 14th is just another day to you, but that doesn’t mean you have to lower your standards in the food department. Have a casual, no-fuss, delicious meal at Alex Stupak’s East Village homage to the al pastor taco. Order up guacamole on the side and a celebrity-chef-inspired Michelada from the likes of Andrew Zimmern and Wylie Dufresne (Alder).

132 Saint Marks Place; 646-833-7039


To discover even more NYC dining spots, visit Zagat.com